Home builders

New home builders grapple with supply chain issues

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – Whether you’re considering building a new home or just doing some renovations if wood and new windows are involved, some experts say you’ll need to be patient.

Supply chain issues force most new home builders to wait months for even the most basic parts to complete the job.

Keith James, managing partner of Coalition Properties Group, told News 19 that almost everything needed to complete construction of a new home is out of stock.

“Drywall, windows, corrugated materials, and when you’re trying to build fences. Things like that,” James said.

New home sales in Alabama since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic are at the fastest pace in more than a decade. The representative for the National Association of Home Builders in Alabama says the biggest problem is the rate at which the inventory of new building materials is shrinking and the price is well over budget. This drives up the price of the house and the mortgage rate once it is sold.

“Going a step further, for first-time home buyers, it hurts because of the increase in the price of lumber and the increase in the price of windows and concrete. Everything is in place. It completely drove them out of the market,” said NAHB Vice President Alicia Huey.

“Think about that, a buyer looking to close in December. But guess what, that interest rate went up in January, which was a $50,000 increase with interest rates. That’s a lot of factors involved. I call it, factors affecting performance and you see it at all levels,” added James.

Property managers like James say they lose money every day. Before the pandemic, home improvement projects could be completed in a month. Now those projects are months away from completion and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight to the supply issues.

“We get excited, then we want to start right away. We want it all done, but customers just have to put that plan in place and know in three months or six months whenever we know we can get the product, then we can start,” Huey said.

The name of the game is patience.